System Selection Advice for Homeowners from Zehnder’s HRV/ERV System Design Team


Aubrey Gewehr: For homeowners, I think it’s important to think long-term when deciding on an HRV or ERV system. When you’re building a house, you install an HRV or ERV system and after that, the wall is sealed. If you install a less quality and perhaps less expensive HRV that blows cold air and is noisy, it will be harder to replace and affects your comfort in the home. Similarly, saving money upfront by joining the HRV with the heating and cooling system ductwork is really hard to change later once the walls are closed up.

Aubrey Gewehr, Northeast Sales Engineer

John Rockwell:

1.  Understand the benefits of balanced HRV/ERV ventilation over “exhaust only” ventilation

2.  Look for companies that offer a complete HRV/ERV system design approach.  Zehnder provides the complete system: HRV, controls, distribution ductwork, registers, etc.  Proper components are just as important to the efficiency and performance of the system as the HRV/ERV unit itself.

John Rockwell, Northeast Sales Engineer

Kevin Rapp: My number one recommendation to anyone I speak to selecting an HRV is to do your research. is a great resource.  HVI provides a good comparison between units since all units are tested under the same protocol. I would also recommend choosing a manufacturer that can help you engineer the whole system- HRV and air distribution components.  If you buy just the HRV box, you don’t really know what you will get as far as efficiency until it’s installed because the air distribution components in those cases aren’t particularly matched for the system.

Kevin Rapp, Midwest Technical Sales Representative

Micky Dunegan:  My first tip is to do your research.  Heat efficiency, energy consumption and noise of HRVs vary and also don’t underestimate the importance of good system design as this will greatly impact the efficiency, comfort, and noise coming from the system.

Micky Dunegan, Southwest Technical Sales Representative

Matt Groves:  Have your architect speak to the manufacturer and the manufacturer’s reps and find out what systems work best for their application. We have the spec sheets online to look at but take advantage of our design service so you can be confident it’s designed by somebody who knows the systems and can design the best one for you.

Matt Groves, Northwest Technical Sales Engineer